Every Friday morning at 8:30AM, I discuss the week’s Winners & Losers on the Cardle & Woolley show on Austin’s 1370 Talk Radio. It’s a lightning round with Jim Cardle, Lynn Woolley and me that runs the gamut from public policy and political trends to sports and culture in Texas, America and the world. We just finished a jam-packed week in Texas. Here’s list of Winners & Losers for April 26.

The biggest Winner of the week is University of Texas at Austin President Jay Hartzell who showed college presidents across the country how to make it clear to fact-challenged students who is actually in charge of taxpayer funded academic institutions. As soon as the Palestine Solidarity Committee announced they were going to take over the campus, Hartzell said very clearly, “our university will not be occupied.” He followed up with the list of rules governing peaceful protest on campus and warned students if they violated the rules, they would be arrested. They did and they were.

The protests at the 40 Acres also generated the top Losers of the week, including the American Association of University Professors (AAUP at UT) which has petitioned the Faculty Council for a “Vote of No Confidence” against Hartzell. The Faculty Council Executive Committee said they are “gravely concerned.” If the elites at UT go after Hartzell, he should treat it as a badge of honor.

Austin’s uber-progressive State Senator, Sarah Eckhardt, who texted Hartzell to complain the Texas Dept. of Public Safety had been called to the UT campus is also on the Losers List. Hartzell responded that he’d asked for DPS help because the campus police could not manage the protest alone. We know this because the Senator sent copies of their text exchange to the media. Hopefully, Hartzell won’t bother to communicate with the Senator via text going forward.

It’s not fair to pick on the Austin American-Statesman by adding them to the Losers List since, as I wrote earlier this week, pretty much all Texas media is deeply embedded in the left-wing narrative on the war in Gaza and everything else. In case you missed my newsletter, you can read it here.

That said, if you want to see an analysis of the war in Gaza that is completely devoid of the Israeli perspective or any concerns about anti-Semitism, take a look at this Statesman “explainer” on why the students are protesting. The “explainer” also includes no information on the links between UT’s Palestine Solidarity Committee and the Committee for Justice in Palestine and its reported links to Hamas.

Originally, Thursday’s protest at UT Austin was going to focus on the DEI ban, but the Palestine Solidarity Committee convinced whoever decides these things that going after Israel was more important. The protest of the firing of DEI employees at UT who violate the Senate Bill 17 ban against segregating students by race and gender is currently scheduled for April 29 – but who knows.

Another big Winner this week is Texas Governor Greg Abbott who has made it clear for months that every Texas university should make protecting Jewish students a priority. That’s the difference between living in the Lone Star State and living in New York.

Abbott also gets more kudos for Operation Lone Star’s success in shutting down the flow of migrants across our southern border. San Diego is now the top spot in the country for arrests of people entering the country illegally. And for those keeping score on the hypocrisy of so-called “Sanctuary Cities,” officials from Denver visited El Paso this week looking for ways to dissuade illegal migrants from coming to the Mile High City.

Florida Governor Ron DeSantis makes the Winners List for telling President Joe Biden that Florida schools will ignore his latest move to expand Title IX, the historic protection for women’s sports. Under Biden, Title IX will now include men who say they are women and vice versa, which is one reason Biden is on this week’s Losers list.

There are a few other policies that also landed the President on the list. First, Biden said he’d repeal the Trump tax cuts if he’s re-elected. Then, while New York City was engulfed in campus riots and House Speaker Mike Johnson showed up to denounce anti-Semitism, Biden went into the Virginia woods and made an Earth Day commercial with Bernie Sanders and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, praising the Green New Deal. Then, his own press, meaning the New York Times, went after him, for “systematically avoiding interviews and questions from major news outlets”, noting that his refusal to talk to the media sets a very bad historic precedent. Finally, his wacky story that his uncle was eaten by cannibals in World War II has created an international incident and soured relations as New Guinea protests being disparaged by the charge that their country is home to people eaters.

Texas Public Policy Foundation makes the Winners List for bravely going after off-shore wind turbines and making a difference. New York State announced they are shutting down several wind power projects. TPPF made it clear from the beginning that they weren’t just tilting against windmills!

In Sports News, Tyler Guyton was selected by the Dallas Cowboys in the NFL Draft last night. Tyler played at Oklahoma, but we are going to forget that. He’s from Manor.

Could go on, but we gotta stop. Listen to Winners & Losers on the Cardle & Woolley show every Friday morning at 8:30 AM on 1370 Talk Radio in Austin. You can listen live online here.


Sherry Sylvester is a Distinguished Senior Fellow at the Texas Public Policy Foundation, and the former Senior Advisor to Texas Lt. Governor Dan Patrick.

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